Handsome: A Netflix Mystery Movie

The first thing you need to know about this mystery movie is that it’s not much of a mystery. You’ll know who the killer is right away, and not just because of your excellent deductive skills. While it doesn’t keep you guessing in the traditional mystery way, it does keep you on your toes because it delights in being flat-out weird.

Jeff Garlin directs, co-writes and stars as Gene Handsome, an L.A. homicide detective _Z6A7088.CR2who will strike you as half bumbling fool, half savant. His partner Fleur (Natasha Lyonne) is more interested in getting laid and his superior (Amy Sedaris, playing delightfully against type) is a stranger case still. Not to mention the fact that Handsome is in charge of “detective school,” training up the new recruits, not all of whom are destined to become ace detectives. So he’s got his hands full when a decapitated body is found on the manicured lawns of a minor celebrity (Steven Weber), splayed out in the shape of a Star of David. Handsome tracks down all of the dead girl’s known associates, including his own beautiful new neighbour, in order to crack the case.

Like I said, the detecting is rather beside the point. This movie feels more like an exercise in the bizarre. I happen to like Jeff Garlin and find him watchable, but this movie may have set a new record in our house for number of arched eyebrows I shot at Sean. There’s little plot but quite a lot of satire in the police-procedural vein. If you’re up for some of Garlin’s trademark witticisms and you don’t mind if your movies exist outside the box, then this  might be a WTF way to spend some time with Netflix. At any rate I admire the experimentation and the improvisational feel; Netflix certainly has become home movies who would otherwise remain homeless. And even if they don’t always hit it out of the park, at least it’s not another super hero franchise!

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13 thoughts on “Handsome: A Netflix Mystery Movie

  1. J.

    Hurrah! I have this on my list and was considering giving it a watch tonight or tomorrow, so this is a timely review! I’m a fan of Garlin also, so it’s a given that I’ll enjoy this… his last flick was a bizarre delight also (Dealin’ With Idiots).

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      1. Jay Post author

        Yes!
        I have a heightened sense of vicarious embarrassment and that show is just too much for me. I can esoterically appreciate the comedy but it makes me just way too uncomfortable to watch.

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      2. J.

        Haha. I know a few folks who feel the same way. It’s one of the greatest things I’ve ever seen and I can definitely relate to Larry!

        Like

  2. Silver Screenings

    I tried to watch this one – tried to like this one – but I just couldn’t connect with it. But I’m glad to see it getting social media love because, like you said, it’s not part of a superhero franchise.

    Liked by 1 person

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